Monday, September 24, 2012

'Stranger In Paradise'

"Take my hand
I'm a stranger in paradise
All lost in a wonderland
A stranger in paradise"
-Tony Bennett, 'Stranger In Paradise'
Here am I in paradise, they said. This is as close as it gets to it on this earth, they said. But someone forgot to mention that I don’t belong in paradise. I breathe my air charred and sticky with sweat. I take my water salty and warm. Even our mountains are shabby and riddled with people. And it’s the people in hell that I miss the most: red-hearted, red-tempered, loud and obnoxious like their laughter.

Here, I take trams all day, going nowhere, always seeking a savior. I reach out my hand only to find it in my pocket. I seek in the frozen faces floating by a little bit of the warmth of hell, but hell has frozen over, leaving me all lost in wonderland.

Here, Prince Charming wears an Armani suit and picks up his “date” in a Porsche Cayenne with an unsuspecting child-seat in the back. The princesses are all trapped in castles up the hill, looking down, missing it all. Looking beyond, dreaming of that hand, pretending it’s not the same one that locked the door this morning. Pretending paradise is still elsewhere, somewhere they may belong to…

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